Air Duct Cleaning

air duct cleaning vent cleaning Houston

Air Duct Cleaning Bait and Switch

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Choosing an Air Duct Cleaning Company

Navigating the many Google Ads, and search results that pop up when you are trying to find a company to clean your vents can be daunting and disheartening. You may call for a price quote and get numbers between 59$ all the way up to 1.000$ or more. Why the disparity in quotes?

Many A/C duct cleaning companies will advertise a super low price. This price would be for a basic or abbreviated service. So, for 79$ they may come with a special vacuum called a negative air machine and hook it up to one vent close other vents off and then turn it on for 30 minutes, but not before trying to up sell you on the other steps of the air duct cleaning process. Mildew removal, cleaning each individual duct, cleaning the plenum box, cleaning the registers, cleaning the returns, odor control, soot sealer, and using a sanitizing method to kill bacteria and spores.

The so called basic is the bait and the up sell is the switch. Many companies use this method of advertising to get customers because most people are not prepared to pay what it actually costs to get a complete cleaning of your air ducts. C&E Carpets and Vents does not use the bait and switch because if a customer chooses the basic they have wasted their money. To hook a vacuum up for a few minutes and do nothing else is a waste of money. We recommend that if you do not want to pay for a complete cleaning then wait and save your money instead of wasting 79$ to pay a tech to turn a stationary vacuum on for half an hour.

How much does it actually cost to get a complete cleaning? A general rule of thumb is to go by how many AC units you have. A complete cleaning of your air ducts including mildew, mold removal and sanitize on average runs about 375$-550$ per unit up to 2 units.   A home that has more than 2 units needs a physical estimate. Folks are often shocked when we give them the price quote over the phone and ask why the difference in prices? I explain that we only do a complete clean.

1. Brushing each individual duct with a special industry approved air duct brush to loosen

all mildew, dirt, dust, and other contaminants.

2. Using the negative air machine to remove all the loosened mildew, dirt, mold.

3.  Cleaning and removing any mildew, mold, fungus, dirt from the Plenum  box

4.   Using soot sealer if needed for odor / particles

5.   Cleaning the registers (also painting them if they are rusty)

6.   Cleaning the Returns

7.    Sanitizing the system using a fogger and biocide which are alcohol based and will

evaporate and will not leave a residue.

Use this list and ask questions when calling for estimates. Make sure you know what you are getting for your money. Don’t fall for a bait and switch! If you live in the Houston area and need to have your ducts cleaned please give us a call at 832-512-5719. 

 

 

How are Air Ducts Cleaned

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Many times air duct cleaning is a MYSTERY

What really happens when you have your air ducts cleaned? As a professional in the industry I will tell you the process can range from nill to expansive depending on the purpose of the cleaning. C&E Carpets and Vents in Houston, TX will only perform a complete cleaning. This means that we do not do an abbreviated job. Some companies will only hook a machine up to a vent, tape off the others and turn the machine on for about an hour or so, then they are done. Our company does not do this “basic” service. We specialize in complete cleanings including brushing each duct with a specially designed and approved brush that removes the dirt, dust, mildew, etc. from each duct. We also clean the plenum box, returns (if needed), registers, vents, and remove mildew, fungus, mold, and sanitize the system.

     A complete cleaning can take several hours.

To do a thorough job takes time and depending on the size of the system and how dirty the duct work, it can take up to several hours to do the job right. Below is a video that shows what generally takes place when having your air ducts cleaned. If you live in Houston, TX and have and AC system, chances are you will need to clean your ducts at some point. Please give us a call and we will be glad to make your homes air cleaner by  cleaning the ducts! 832-512-5719

Air Duct Cleaning Houston

Are Those Groupon Air Duct Coupons Really a Good Deal?

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Groupon! Everyone loves to save money and Groupon seems like such a great deal! But can you really get a truly good service at such cut rate prices?

Air Duct Cleaning Houston

Groupon Deals for Air Duct Cleaning in Houston

This is about what you find when you go to Groupon for a Home Service Deal like Air Duct Cleaning. Houston is no exception, and Groupon will be riddled with these coupons. Is this for real? I mean can a company really offer air duct cleaning for 49$ or 35$ or even 59$?

The short answer is NO! You the customer have to give up something. A company cannot do a complete cleaning for $25, which is what the company receives after you purchase the Groupon. Make sure you know what you are getting when you go to Groupon and do a little research before you purchase.

 

Air Duct Cleaning Houston

Is Groupon a Good Deal for Houston Air Duct Cleaning

Read the fine print so that you can decide whether the Groupon is a good deal or a bait and switch.  Many air duct cleaning companies will place an unbelievably low price for a service with no real intention of performing that service at the price advertised.

This doesn’t mean all companies are bad or all Groupon deals are bad. It only means you need to know before you start what you are getting for your money and if you do decide to get an expanded service then make sure you are still getting your money’s worth for the Groupon.

Most Groupon deals offer a discount on a basic service in the hopes that you will also want to add on. This can be a win for the client and a win for the business as long as each party gets a benefit.

If you are buying a Groupon ask questions, read the fine print, and know what you are getting for your money! If the basic abbreviated service is all you want or need make sure they will really give you that for the price you pay. If you want more, make sure that you are still getting the service discounted equal to the Groupon ad. So if the Groupon gives you a discount of 100$ make sure you still get that discount when you upgrade!

If you would like to get a free quote over the phone for Air Duct Cleaning in Houston please give us a call at 832-512-5719

Mildew on Air Vent

Is There an Odor Coming Out of Your Vents?

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What’s that musty smell? Is there a mildew smell in your home and you can’t figure out why? It might be your air ducts. In Houston, TX it’s hot and humid and this can lead to mildew growing in your air duct system. When the A/C turns on and begins to blow out air through your duct system it also blows the odor of the mildew growing inside the system. If you have a sensitivity to allergens you might also suffer sinus and respiratory infections and inflammation in addition to being annoyed by the smell. Condensation along with the over abundance of mold spores are part of the problem. The long warm periods and running your AC system 10 months out of the year also contributes to mold and mildew growth. How do you combat a force that begins with nature and invades your home with the help of such a great technological innovation like air conditioning?

Mildew on Air Vent

Mildew on Air Vent

The answer is regular cleanings and in the case of stubborn persistent mold and mildew growth, Ultra Violet Lights. UV lights help kill mold spores as they pass through the Plenum on their way to your ducts and into your home. Ultra violet light is a great germ killer and UV lights can help to keep mildew, fungus, and mold growth down between cleanings. 

Many times our clients ask how often they should clean their systems. Most of the time every few years is enough. If you have a problematic system using a combination of UV lights and cleaning every few years should keep the issue of mold and mildew growing in your system at bay. Occasionally there is a secondary problem that is contributing to mildew growth outside of the usual culprits like condensation and mold spores. A home could have an older system or perhaps ducts that are damaged or defective. Sometimes this leads to excessive moisture build up. This is not usually the norm and most of the time a simple complete cleaning is enough to take care of the mildew and the smell. If you live in the Houston area and would like a free quote for a complete air duct cleaning in your home, please give us a call at 832-512-5719

Allergens in Your Home

How to Choose an Air Duct Cleaning Company

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indoor air pollution

The contaminants in your home can be both man made and from nature

When searching for home maintenance companies, a homeowner  is often bombarded with an over whelming amount of companies to choose from, but not enough information to make a good choice. The last thing a home owner wants is an unqualified sketchy worker handling, repairing, or cleaning their home and belongings. We work hard for the things that we acquire and as home owners we want to have the assurance that the job will be done right and to our satisfaction.

How do you find a qualified maintenance provider?

The BBB (Better Business Bureau) is a good place to start. Even if a company doesn’t pay the bureau to feature them, they can still list them as a business and show any complaints that may have been lodged against them. It also never hurts to ask the company when making the appointment if they do background checks or if they are bonded or insured. Being bonded is not required but background checks should be. Don’t forget that these people are coming into your home and you don’t want anyone with a criminal background inside your home with access to your family or valuables. It never hurts to check registered associations although this is not always a sure way to measure the integrity or quality of a company. After all, most associations only require that the member pay dues in order to be a part of the organization.

                         One of the best ways to gauge a company’s quality and integrity is through customer reviews.

Checking the online reviews and testimonials of a company using a trusted site like Yelp, Angie’s List, or Google Plus Reviews. Real time customer feedback is one of the best ways to gauge the performance of a company.

We invite you to do your research and don’t do business with a company that makes you feel uncomfortable. If you are thinking about having your air ducts cleaned and you live in the Houston area, Please give us a call!  Here is our Yelp listing along with the reveiws, and here is our Google Plus Page.

Air Duct Cleaning Houston 832-512-5719

 

Houston Air Duct Cleaning

Indoor Air Quality and Allergens

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If you didn’t have allergies before you moved to Houston, TX; you surely have them now that you live in Houston. The air quality is notorious for being polluted but this pollution is not always

man made. Many irritants and contaminants found inside our home are from mold spores, pollen, dust mites, pet dander, and other organic matter. Of course this doesn’t mean that your home is free from man made pollutants.

indoor air pollution

The contaminants in your home can be both man made and from nature

No, in fact all of the materials used to build and maintain your home give off pollutants like formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, and other volatile organic compounds that cause respiratory irritation. Yes, it can seem like a mine field and impossible to avoid allergens. Thankfully your body works constantly to clean out and rid itself of all the contaminants that we are exposed to on a daily basis. The issues begin when your body becomes overwhelmed and can’t keep up with the amount of irritant exposure.

So how  can you keep these contaminants down to a minimum and give your body a fighting chance?

  • Use a HEPA filter
  • Don’t smoke inside your home
  • Use mats in entry ways and take your shoes off inside your home
  • Uses a high efficiency vacuum cleaner
  • Fix leaks immediately
  • Keep moisture down to prohibit mold growth
  • remove and clean mildew and mold immediately

For a more complete list see the arb.ca.gov site

We recommend periodic cleaning of your upholstery, carpets, tile, and air ducts. Carpets and upholstery will hold dust mites and pet dander. Bacteria and other contagions can also live inside your carpets, upholstery, tile, and air ducts. Vacuum on a regular basis and use a vacuum that has a good filtration system. Invest in a HEPA A/C filter and have your home maintained every so often professionally with professional upholstery, carpet, and air duct cleaning. We recommend that you clean your carpets and upholstery every 3 to 6 months depending on how much use they get. Air ducts should be cleaned every 2 to 4 years. Dryer vents at least twice a year. These cleaning schedules are not written in stone but can be used as guide lines to help maintain your home and help decrease the amount of allergens and pollutants you are exposed to on a daily basis.

allergens in your carpet and furniture

Dust mites and pet dander can live in your carpets

The only home maintenance recommendations that cannot be subject to your discretion and delayed are dryer vents and furnaces. These can be dangerous if not maintained properly so always stay on top of your dryer vent cleaning and furnace maintenance.

For free estimates or questions about any of our services in the Houston area including air duct cleaning and carpet cleaning please call 832-512-5719

We service the entire Houston, TX area including the Woodlands, Pearland, Sugar Land, Missouri City, Katy, Pasadena, League City, Webster, Clear Lake, Galveston, and Spring.

Fungus on Air Duct

Air Duct Cleaning in Houston, TX

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Houston Air Duct Cleaning

Allergens in air ducts, Houston, TX

Ah!!!!!!!   Air conditioning it’s what makes Houston’s weather bearable! Touted as the air conditioning capital of the world, Houston gets hot and trying to make it through a hot humid summer without A/C is a scary thought. (Gray, 2012) I’ve heard people say it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity. Yes, definitely it is probably a combination of both. Take both the heat and the humidity and put them together with the mold, mildew, pollen, and pollution, and boy do you have a recipe for disaster! As a Houstonian your A/C system is going to get more than a workout. With the moisture build up in your system along with the mildew, fungus, and pollen spores, your air ducts can become moldy and full of allergens. During the winter we just don’t get a break either. The weather waffles back and forth between warm and humid to cool and dry, giving our sinuses and lungs a run for their money.

One preventative step you can take is to have your air ducts cleaned and cleared of dust, dirt, mildew, mold, fungus, pollen, and any other contaminants that might be setting up shop in your air duct system. Definitely make sure you deal with a sound reputable company and don’t allow them to use unfounded scare tactics. Yes, some systems can become really foul but most of the time the mildew and other gunk that grows in your system can be taken care of and for extremely reasonable fees.

Air duct cleaning, Houston

Having the air ducts in your home cleaned is one way to fight back allergies and breathing issues.

C&E Carpets and Vents performs a complete service including sanitizing and cleaning the plenum with out flowing vents, and returns if they need to be cleaned as well. Occasionally our customers also choose to have Ultra Violet lights installed inside their system in order to kill any future spores and to help prevent regrowth. Ultra violet lights do eventually burn out and if you choose to use these lights as a preventative, you must replace them periodically.

When the technician arrives he should do a thorough walk through and inspect the plenum box

air duct cleaning vent cleaning Houston

Removing vent covers is one way the technician can visually inspect and demonstrate the cleaning and mildew removal.

where all of the ducts are attached as well as taking off the vent covers and inspecting inside the air ducts. You should be able to see what the technician sees and a qualified technician will be able to give you a firm quote on how much it will cost and how long it will take to clean your air ducts.

So don’t get taken to the cleaners and don’t get in a panic over your dirty vents and air ducts. If you are not comfortable with a company don’t be bullied. It’s ok to get a second opinion and to have the technicians show you the issues and explain to you how they are going to solve them. Our technicians are courteous and we value your time. Feel free to call and ask about our air duct cleaning service in Houston, TX  today! 832-512-5719

Dust Mites and Allergens

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We’ve all seen this guy before, Dermatophagoides farinae Hughes, the infamous and terrifying dust mite. He lives anywhere that there is organic matter for him to feed on. Organic matter can be dead skin we slough off during the day. (People shed about a pound of skin a year.) Let’s see, there’s also pet dander if you just so happen to have pets. Hair that is shed is also organic matter that dust mites could feed on.

Dust mite allergies

Dust mites thrive on our dead skin and pet dander.

Apparently the mites like to target matter that has been predigested by fungi. Yes, there is a fungus among us! Fungus and bacteria find the skin and other particles we leave behind and begin to break that matter down. This predigested matter is much easier for mites to eat and this is what they target.

What is the harm or danger of living with dust mites?

Dust mites don’t bite us or suck our blood. (That’s the good news!) Dust mites do produce waste and can multiply to billions. Dust mite poo, (yes, poo) when produced in overwhelming amounts in closed spaces can tax our immune systems. Some, more than others, have sensitivities to these allergens. A little immune response is good, and we want our immune systems to be in good shape to fight off illness and infection. Too much immune response can be a bad thing and excessive inflammation can lead to asthma, hives, severe itching, sneezing, and sinus problems.

The average life cycle for a male house dust mite is 10 to 19 days. A mated female house dust mite can last up to 70 days, laying 60 to 100 eggs in the last 5 weeks of her life. In a 10-week life span, a house dust mite will produce approximately 2,000 fecal particles and an even larger number of partially digested enzyme-covered dust particles  

So the good news is that they don’t bite and are relatively harmless, but the bad news is that they multiply like crazy and can be a source of allergic flare ups and allergic reactions.[pullquote-left] How can we keep their numbers down and keep the amount of dust mite carcasses and feces to a minimum?[/pullquote-left]  First off, we can target and clean the places where most of the dust mites are going to be living in our homes. The favorite living spaces of dust mites include

 

  • Carpets
  • Upholstery
  • Mattresses
  • Pillows
  • Bedding
  • Rugs
  • Dirty Laundry

Anywhere we leave stuff for dust mites to eat, they will find and set up shop. Regular washing of bedding and pillows in hot water with detergent and thoroughly drying on high heat is one way to cut down on the dust mite population. Steam cleaning mattresses, carpet and upholstery is another. When vacuuming make sure to use a hepa filter or some other kind of filter that will capture microscopic particles. Most standard filters are not able to keep dust mites trapped inside and you just end up blowing the dust and mites all over your home. Regular cleaning and airing out of our living space is one of the best measures to help control mite population. Keeping the humidity down inside your home also helps to keep the environment less than favorable for dust mite procreation. Apparently dust mites like damp humid spaces, and living in Houston, TX it is difficult to keep the humidity down. One way to decrease the humidity in your home is to run your air conditioner. Houston is the most air conditioned city in the U.S. so most everyone has and uses their A/C.

Some professionals in the air duct cleaning industry state that there are dust mites living in your A/C air ducts and this can lead to allergic reactions and respiratory issues. However; there is debate about whether or not mites actually do live in your air ducts because there may not be enough organic material for the mites to feed on. Theoretically it could be possible for dust mites to set up shop in your air ducts if there was a food source and conditions were conducive to dust mite breeding. In any case there are lots of other reasons to clean out your air ducts because of bioaerosols that can contaminate your ducts and cause adverse reactions like sneezing, itching, coughs, and the like. (But that’s a story for a different post!)

So clean your bedding, mattresses, clothes, carpets, and upholstery on a regular basis and keep your home cool and the humidity down. We may not be able to rid ourselves of all the dust mites but we can certainly keep their numbers down and keep our allergies from making us miserable! Give us a call today and have your furniture and carpets professionally cleaned. Professional steam cleaning not only kills the mites but also viruses and bacteria that can live in your upholstery and carpets.

832-512-5719

 

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_dust_mite

http://www.webmd.com/allergies/guide/dust-allergies

http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/fcs/mold.html

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